Stainless Steel, Steel and Aluminium Welding and Fabrication

Precision Water Jet Cutting

Roll Cages and Metal Fabrication

RB Engineering is a bespoke manufacturer involved in many different engineering projects and roll cages and metal fabrication is just one of them. There are no projects too small, too large, or too specialized, and we cover everything from steel fabrication, water jet cutting, marine fabrication, and rollers and conveyors. If you’re a fan of Rally sport racing, you may have even seen some of our work in action; we have manufactured roll-cages for a number of popular rally cars. If rallying isn’t your thing, you may be wondering what a roll-cage is? A roll cage is the single most important safety feature in the car, and it’s not something that you would trust to just anybody. If you crash and your roll-cage fails, that’s it – game over. If you consider yourself a cinephile, you may have seen Quentin Tarantino’s Grindhouse, and in particular, the feature Death Proof where Kurt Russel kills his victims in staged car crashes, while protecting himself in his roll-cage equipped stunt-car.

Roll Cages and Metal Fabrication

Metal Fabrication Specialists RB Engineering

Constructing a roll cage takes expertise in design, construction, choosing the right materials, and welding. Most people may not realize it, but welding is an art in itself. There are many different types of welds, depending on the materials being used. RB Engineering has experience and expertise in all the different types of welds, which are MIG, TIG, MMA, and 450 amps. What exactly are these different weld types? MIG stands for Metal Inert Gas, and is also sometimes called Gas Metal Arc Welding, or GMAW. This process was developed back in the 1940’s to weld Aluminum. The process initially used an inert gas like argon. Argon is one of the so-called “noble” gasses, characterized by their properties, which are colorless, odorless, monatonic, with very low chemical reactivity. Although argon is the third most abundant element in the earth’s atmosphere at 0.93% (even more so than carbon dioxide), it is expensive, which meant that MIG welding was a relatively expensive process. Relatively recent advances in the technique enabled the use of semi-inert gasses like carbon dioxide, which saw a significant drop in the cost of this weld technique, opening it up to a host of other applications, including welding steel which is now cost-efficient.

So what are the advantages of MIG welding over other types of weld techniques? For one, we’ve already mentioned its ability to weld non-ferrous metals like aluminum, which it was originally designed for. Its other advantages though, are what make the technique useful in steel welding for instance.  These are:

  • MIG welds produce long, continuous welds much faster than a normal, or traditional weld.
  • The technique produces a clean weld with very little “splatter”, thanks to the protection offered by the shielding gas.
  • Finally, the technique can be used in a wide variety of metals and alloys.
Welding of all metals

Welding of all metals

So then the question arises. If MIG welds have so many advantages, why are we all familiar with the more “traditional” welding techniques? If MIG has been around so long, why isn’t it more widespread and better known? This brings us to look at the disadvantages of the technique.

  • MIG welding equipment is complex and expensive. You need a source of direct current, a continuous stream of gas, and a continuously moving wire electrode. The electrode itself varies in size and type of metal, and has to be matched to the specific welding application.
  • Even welders that are experienced in traditional welding need some time to get the hang of it.
  • The use of the inert gas shield means that the technique cant be used in open areas where even a light breeze would blow the gas away. In cases like this, special measures need to be taken to prevent this from occurring.

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